About this artwork

Sir George Reid was considered one of the finest draughtsmen of his day, and noted for his subtle use of monochrome washes to capture the effect of light in his landscape studies. This sketch shows the rear entrance to Traquair House near, Peebles in the Scottish Borders. It is reputedly the oldest inhabited house in Scotland. In the foreground is a tributary of the River Tweed, and the open gates are almost identical to Traquair's famous Bear Gates, which are located at the front of the house. After Bonnie Prince Charlie had stayed at Traquair in 1745 these gates were locked and were not to be opened again until a Stuart sat on the Scottish throne once more. They have remained locked ever since.

Sir George Reid

Sir George Reid

Reid was born in Aberdeen and worked first as a lithographer before moving to Edinburgh in 1862 to study at the Trustees' Academy. In 1866, supported by the Aberdeen collector, John Forbes White, he went to Holland to study under the landscape and genre painter, Gerrit Mollinger. He became a close friend of Jozef Israels. He returned to Scotland in 1869, producing landscapes and portraits influenced by both Dutch and French contemporary painting. He was elected President of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1891 and knighted in 1902.